Whose Golden Age Was This?
|I Have a Library ... Maybe 4,000 Titles, says Video Enthusiast Martin Scorsese. This 1985|
Ad Couldn't Be More Quaint If Marty Were Wearing Beads and a Nehru Jacket
Video Cassettes --- Now There's Extinct
|Holy Cow --- Look At These Prices!|
Home video was the first legitimate, mass-market way of owning movies. You could get chunks of them before on 8 or 16mm, even more-less complete back in Kodascope days, a pursuit limited to niche (and well-heeled) hobbyists. The first time I saw home video was in the mid-seventies, a recollection so dim as to question reality of it. Did I dream the woman who'd worked in a TV station and snuck out video recording equipment years before, just so she could capture episodes of Voyage To The Bottom Of The Sea off ABC each week? Her archive, and OCD to surpass my own, foresaw home video years before anyone came to the concept, the reward a full run of Voyages with vintage commercials intact. Never mind bulky (and probably balky) tape that was an inch, three-quarter inch ... can't recall which ... and a recorder taking up half the lady's den. You had to be impressed by anyone who loved Voyage To The Bottom Of The Sea enough to go through all this to have it.
|Something They Had That We Don't --- Republic Serials on Legit Home Format|
|Remember How Lovely Vertigo Looked on VHS?|
|The First Batch of Pre-48 Metros To Be Offered on VHS|
|Making The Club Scene, But Few Real Oldies Were Offered|
|Unless I'm Mistaken, The First Disney Classic Offered on VHS|
|Creative, or Obnoxious, 80's Video Marketing, But Maybe This Is |
What It Took To Peddle Deep Libraries Thirty Years Ago
|Ivan Would Be Less Terrible Once Corinth Color-Corrected It|
|RKO's Was Among First Vaulties To Come Into VHS/Beta Homes|
There were video clubs you could join, like earler LP membership with minimum purchases per year. For every It Happened One Night offered, there'd be a dozen Norma Rae's. Frightful lore of record clubbing from the 60's (kids join, parents cancel) kept me from signing on. Came VHS releasing onslaught through the 80's and much of the 90's during which I stuck with 16 and even 35mm film, capitulation timed with a new century when DVD and projection TV made giving up celluloid viable at last. Now we can drop by a flea market and have Psycho for a quarter on VHS, or hit the landfill on a flush day and score it plus a thousand other cassettes for nothing. There is for me no sentiment coming across nests of them in a closet, other than faint regret I'd bought them in the first place. And yet a Castle Film on 8mm in its original box can bring tears to the eye (GPS has no footie pajama stories to tell about VHS). Was I too jaded by home video's arrival to properly engage the format, or allow it to engage me? There are surely those that hold dear a first cassette as gateway to a life loving film, and maybe they're the ones who will cry when flea marketers hand over Psycho and precious childhood for the bargain price of a quarter. Everything's got meaning for somebody. Are there ones out there for whom a choice VHS box would make the perfect gift?